From 17 September to 8 January 2017, EYE presented the international group exhibition Celluloid, featuring work by artists who use and reflect on the qualities of 16mm and 35mm film stock and the cinematic apparatus. At a time of almost total digitisation of the moving image, the participating artists focus attention on the remarkable qualities of analogue film stock and film equipment. The participating artists, Tacita Dean, João Maria Gusmão & Pedro Paiva, Rosa Barba, Sandra Gibson & Luis Recoder, incorporated celluloid’s special qualities in their original and multi-layered film installations.
In 2011 the British artist Tacita Dean made the huge and sensational 35mm installation FILM for the Turbine Hall at the Tate Modern, which went on show in the Netherlands for the first time during this exhibition. Portuguese artist duo João Maria Gusmão & Pedro Paiva work with countless 16mm projectors and projections on remarkable and multi-layered film installations. They describe their work as a ‘poetical philosophical fiction’.
Rosa Barba investigates cinematic apparatus in her work and makes sculptural installations in which time plays an important role. Finally, the New York artist couple Sandra Gibson & Luis Recoder express the magic of celluloid in sculptures, installations and live performances that involve various lenses, filters, gels and other tools.
At a time of rapid and almost total digitisation of the moving image, however, these filmmakers and artists significantly focus on its material properties. Using 16mm or 35mm film stock and related film machinery, these filmmakers breathe new life into analogue, physical celluloid. Emphasizing the unrivalled power of the projected, cinematic image, they celebrate the visual richness and nuances of colour in film material. They also reintroduce projectors and accompanying loop systems and projector stands into space. Such phenomena as light, time and movement, as well as distinctive elements like perforations and audio tracks are eagerly analysed.
The exhibition corresponded closely with one of the core activities of EYE Filmmuseum, which itself possesses a vast collection of celluloid films and is an international leader in the field of research into the material aspects of celluloid and restoration techniques. The collection is housed in the EYE Collection Centre.
- Director of Exhibitions / Curator: Jaap Guldemond
- Associate Curator: Marente Bloemheuvel
- Project Managers: Claartje Opdam, Sanne Baar
- Graphic Design: Joseph Plateau, Amsterdam
- Technical Production: Indyvideo, Utrecht; in collaboration with Gerrit-Jan Faber, Martin Schrevelius and the EYE projectionists
- Installation: Landstra & De Vries, Amsterdam
- Lighting: Theatermachine, Amsterdam
The exhibition Celluloid was accompanied by a publication that explores the work of the participating artists in more detail and the phenomenon of celluloid from a historical perspective. With contributions from the artists themselves, and essays by Cristina Cámara Bello, John Hanhardt, Marc Glöde, Jaap Guldemond, Philippe-Alain Michaud and Mark Nash. Published in collaboration with nai010 Uitgevers.
films, talks, events
EYE offered a comprehensive programma that connected work by the exhibiting artists with their artistic counterparts in film, literature and the visual arts.
From A to Z
specialCompilation programme, 2017
filmJoão Maria Gusmão and Pedro Paiva, 2016